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Hoffmann, R. A wiki for the life sciences where authorship matters. Nature Genetics (2008)

Effect of periodic antiascaris and antigiardia treatment on nutritional status of preschool children.

One hundred fifty-nine children aged 24 to 61 months with 60% ascariasis prevalence and 21.5% giardiasis prevalence in rural Guatemala were studied prospectively for 1 yr. They were divided into four groups comparable for age, sex, socioeconomic status, and past growth experience as judged by slopes of height and weight on age. Each group was randomly assigned to the following 2-monthly treatment regimens: group I, placebo, group II, piperazine, group III, metronidazole; group IV, piperazine and metronidazole. Height and weight were measured every 3 months and stools were examined for parasites every 4 months. Piperazine administration decreased the prevalence of ascariasis to 33.8% at the end of the study but growth remained unaltered. Metronidazole administration decreased the prevalence of giardiasis to 2.5% at the end of the study and was accompanied by increased growth as judged by delta weight, delta % weight for age, slope of weight on age, delta height, delta % height for age and slope of height on age. It is suggested that failure of antiascaris treatment to enhance growth in this study may be because of 1) absence of severe malnutrition in the subjects, 2) adequacy of dietary protein, 3) possible low worm load, and 4) failure to eradicate ascariasis. The findings suggest that giardiasis is associated with reduced growth in preschool children.[1]


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